Column Begins

My first monthly CrimeReads column on Lee Child appeared today in the online magazine. is the largest website dedicated to reading and writing crime/thriller/mystery novels (up to 900,000 circulation). You might recognize Lee’s story from my website.

Unlike other writers, he had a fairly easy time getting his first book published and since then has had an incredible run writing Jack Reacher novels. He recently announced he’s retiring from the franchise and is turning over the reins to his brother.

Other famous authors who will appear soon in my  CrimeReads column include Michael Connelly, David Morrell and Steve Berry. Watch this space for more first-timer stories.

Author Stephen James as Mentor

I was scheduled this week to be in Seattle for a writers workshop with New York Times bestselling authors Stephen James and Bob Dugoni. Yep. The first epicenter in the US for the Coronavirus. So yeah, it didn’t happen. But the dozen of us in the program had all submitted the first 50 pages of our manuscripts to critique. What to do? Follow through with the critique now remotely or sit on it for six months until the program is rescheduled? Most of us wanting to continue our writing, said do it now. So I was on Zoom with Stephen this week.

The good news is he loved my manuscript. He had a lot of good suggestions for changes–all relatively minor–and showed me a couple of tricks I will use in the future. But early in the conversation, he told me my manuscript was the best he’d read this year. My mouth dropped. I told him he must have been reading some bad stuff. He said no. It really was good. Well if that doesn’t motivate you, what will? So I’m hunkering down and isolating myself in front of my computer. Maybe in a few years you’ll be reading my manuscript in book form. I’ll keep you posted.

New Monthly Column with is based in lower Manhattan in New York City, which means the staff is working from home and trying to avoid the Corona Virus. But living at the epicenter of the virus, well, their staff is not immune and some are now quarantined.

So they’re a bit short-staffed at the moment. What that means is my new column, scheduled to launch today, will launch next Thursday. If you’re reading this, you can still read my piece today. Just visit my website and click on “Famous Authors.” Or better yet, just click here.

So far I have finished five pieces: four on my website and a piece on Tess Gerritsen, who is scheduled for May. I’m still writing Randy Wayne White, Gayle Lynds and Scott Turow.  Lots going on, just a week later than expected.